Are You Ready For The Road?
An average of 13,000 Americans are killed between Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day, some as a result of unperformed vehicle maintenance, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Each year, neglected maintenance leads to more than 2,600 deaths, nearly 100,000 disabling injuries and more than $2 billion in lost wages, medical expenses and property damage.
Most mechanical failures can be traced to neglected maintenance. For example, the U. S. Department of Transportation reports the leading cause of mechanical breakdown on our nation's highways is overheating, a condition that is easily avoidable. Other deficiencies that are simple to detect include low antifreeze/coolant, worn or loose drive belts and defective cooling system hoses.
Checking tire pressure and inflating a tire costs nothing, yet an average of 21 percent of cars inspected in check lanes during National Car Care Month have under inflated tires. This can lead to a blowout and a serious accident.
Fuel Saving Tips
|Condition||Effect||MPG Penalty up to|
|Under inflated tires||Increase rolling resistance||1-2mpg|
|Dirty air filter||Causes excessively rich fuel/air mixture||2.0mpg|
|Worn spark plugs||Cause inefficient combustion, wasted fuel||2.0mpg|
|Worn O2 sensor||Unable to detect and adjust air/fuel mixture||3mpg|
|Dirty or substandard engine oil||Increases internal engine friction||0.4mpg|
|Loose gas cap||Allows fuel to evaporate||2.0mpg|
|Potential loss in fuel economy if all of the above were neglected||11.4mpg|
The Car Care Council offers these fuel-saving tips:
Fuel-saving driving tips include:
WIPERS - In the 2001National Car Care Month vehicle check lanes, 21percent of participants had wipers that smeared, streaked or chattered across their windshields. Although climates vary, wipers generally need replacing every six months. An easy reminder is to change wiper blades in the spring and fall when you change your clock. Be sure the windshield washers are working properly, too, and keep the reservoir filled with solvent.
LIGHTING - Another important pre-trip check should be exterior and interior lighting. Vehicle check lanes revealed an overall failure rate of over 25 percent in the lighting category. The Car Care Council reminds motorists to check their lights monthly. Other suggestions from the Council include turning on headlights both day and night. This helps define your car's position on the road, and its distance from other drivers. When your vehicle's lighting is defective, other motorists may not get the message that you intend to stop or turn. The end result could be disastrous.
10 Minute Pre-Trip Checkup Can Pay Off
Car Care Council offers three suggestions for a traveler's 10-minute pre-trip checklist:
"While a last minute checkup is better than no checkup, motorists should plan ahead to allow time to perform necessary maintenance themselves or at the local service facility. A properly maintained vehicle is safer and more dependable and will even save a few dollars at the gas pumps," said the Car Care Council's Executive Director, Rich White.
Not only can a pre-trip inspection help reduce chances of costly and possibly dangerous road trouble, it also provides an opportunity to have repairs made at home, with one's own technician who knows the vehicle. Especially important, it provides peace of mind. While no inspection can guarantee a car's performance, it's comforting to know proper precautions were taken.
AZ Auto and Radiator performed a thorough check of my vehicle and found some issues that I suspected were present, but were never diagnosed by another local auto business. The owner took the time to show me (on the vehicle) what he recommended and why. Professional, friendly service, and they didn't pressure me to have everything fixed immediately. Highly recommended!
As usual, Danny and staff did an AWESOME job! Danny and AnnMarie are wonderful people and are as honest as the day is long. AZ Auto and Radiator have been doing the maintenance on all of my vehicles since 1997 or 98, and I will continue to take my vehicle maintenance needs to them. They do excellent work, and will tell you the truth about your vechicle maintenance needs; without all the extra stuff that other auto shops will try to sell you. Take your vehicle to Danny and crew for you next vehicle maintenance needs--You Won't Be Sorry!
Danny and the crew at Arizona Auto are tops for reliable workmanship and customer service.
Just had my oil change and a much-needed window repair before monsoon season hits. I have an older vehicle and I like that Danny and AnnMarie take a wholistic approach at caring for my car--they try to watch for possible issues and let me know what might be coming up. They are also mindful about determining the cause behind any needed repairs (if it is not something attributed to basic wear over time) so that we don't end up repairing the same issue over and over.
Not only can we trust that our truck is getting excellent, and current, service with Arizona Auto; each time we go, there is some thoughtful improvement to the waiting area. We couldn't be happier with them!
Seventeen years later we still depend on our extended family at Arizona Auto to fix our problems.
Got my vehicle in right on time and completed the work in a timely matter. Friendly and helpful staff. Repair was very reasonably priced. Plan to return when vehicles need service.
I find the owners and staff trustworthy and ethical. My car is always ready when promised.
I trust the people who work at Arizona Auto and Radiator. A few years ago, they sold a car for us. They told us they expected to sell it for $4,000; we thought that would be a good price to get for the car. They sold it for $5,000 and gave us the extra $1,000. We would never have known that they sold it for a higher price and would have been happy to receive the $4,000 originally estimated. I don't think that level of honesty is common in many businesses.
Major RAVE for Dustin and Danny at AZ Auto on Bartow. My 14 y/o vehicle had been ignored and abused for some time. Danny is a great diagnostician, Dustin worked with me on some of the maintenance issues it had. Nobody ever spoke down to me because I am a female (They did not know I was a Veteran Army mechanic). Nobody tried to oversell. My car drives like new. Very impressed.